LG LTE smartphone sales top 5 million in Korea, is it enough for 18 months?

April 11, 2013
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While they’re no match for the record-breaking numbers posted by Samsung fiscal quarter after quarter, LG’s smartphone sales have been on the rise lately, mostly boosted by the Nexus 4 and Optimus G hits.

Very recently, we’ve seen LG’s UK market share grow from a terribly modest 0.3% in 2012’s opening months to 4.3% in the debut of 2013. Granted, that’s still not awfully impressive, but it is a progress.

But LG isn’t thriving only just due to N4’s awesome quality-price ratio. The L-series sales have topped 15 million units a couple of months ago, whereas the company’s LTE line-up has been met with a lot of enthusiasm especially in South Korea.

According to official claims, LG’s LTE-enabled smartphones have recently surpassed sales of 5 million units in the company’s homeland. That’s 5 million sold in 18 months, or an average of close to 280 thousand each month.

I know, the average is not mind-blowing, but we have to take into account the fact that LG’s LTE portfolio has not been very diversified from the get-go. The Optimus LTE has been the first 4G phone to see daylight in Korea in October 2011, followed by the LTE Tag, View, LTE 2, Optimus G, View 2, Optimus G Pro and LTE 3.

LG sales

The last two have only been available for a little over a month, with the Optimus G Pro already performing exceptionally – 500,000 units sold in the first 40 days on the market.

Unfortunately for LG, its LTE portfolio is not crazy popular outside Korea, with global sales reaching 10 million units just last month. That means the company has likely moved less than 6 million such handhelds in total in countries like US, Canada, Japan, France or Germany.

True, many European countries have very young LTE networks, but 6 million is still a minuscule number when we think how many 4G-enabled smartphones are sold stateside every day.

On the bright side, the trend does seem to be favorable in terms of global LTE sales too, with 5 million turning into 10 in the space of just seven months (August 2012 – March 2013). But if LG wants Huawei’s overall bronze at the end of this year, that growing pace is probably not enough.

Can LG boost its sales enough to reach the 2013 smartphone manufacturer podium? Will the Optimus G Pro be the one to accelerate the company’s rise to glory? Make your predictions below.

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